US Hails UN Resolution on Syria Peace Process
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – US Secretary of State John Kerry hailed a resolution recently adopted by the UN to endorse an international bid to end the Syrian crisis, saying that it is time to "stop killing" in Syria.
"This (UN security) council is sending a clear message to all concerned that the time is now to stop the killing in Syria," John Kerry told the 15-nation council after the vote, Reuters reported on Saturday.
Kerry made clear that there were still differences on the future of Assad as well as on the question of which Syrian opposition groups will have a seat at the table in talks with the government.
"We are under no illusions about the obstacles that exist," Kerry said. "There obviously remain sharp differences within the international community, especially about the future of President Assad."
On Friday, the United Nations Security Council unanimously approved a resolution endorsing an international roadmap for a Syria peace process.
The five permanent Security Council members which have veto powers agreed on the text of the draft resolution prior to the vote, in which the remaining 10 members also gave their approval.
The text calls for the UN to present the council with options for monitoring a ceasefire within one month of adoption of the resolution. It also backed a timeline previously agreed in Vienna for talks between the government on a unity government and opposition, and eventual elections.
The talks between Syria's government and opposition should begin in early January, the draft said.
The deal on the draft resolution came on the sidelines of a meeting of the International Syria Support Group at New York's Palace Hotel.
The roadmap, which also calls for a nationwide ceasefire that would not apply to ISIL, Nusra Front and some other militant groups, was worked out in two rounds of ministerial talks in Vienna.
Diplomats said the main problem in the negotiations on the resolution involved Russian and Iranian concerns about how to refer to a bloc of opposition groups that would join UN-led peace talks with the Syrian government set to begin in January.
The New York Friday meeting comes following two rounds of talks held in the Austrian capital of Vienna on October 30 and November 14 to discuss settlement of the ongoing crisis in Syria.
The participants agreed in the last negotiations to meet again in “approximately one month” to review progress toward a ceasefire and the start of a political process in the violence-scarred country.
Influential countries like Russia, the United States, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey, as well as representatives from the Syrian government and opposition groups have taken part in the recent negotiations on Syria.
Syria has been gripped by civil war since March 2011 with Takfiri terrorists from various groups, including the Daesh, currently controlling parts of it.